Tag Archives: opinion

A Lesson Before Dying. (Review)

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So A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines. Not a bad book but I found out that I can’t read this book and watch The Green Mile at the same time. I would have finished it the other night but I tried doing both at the same time and it sent me into an anxiety attack. So that was something. But it doesn’t take much anymore. I mean, I spent the weekend with someone and they were listing off some restaurants and I kind of panicked and couldn’t make a decision and made her do it. But this was bad.

The book was written in 1993 and it’s set in the late ‘40’s. A young black guy is wrongly accused of killing people and is sentenced to jail. The guy’s godmother and another lady make the other lady’s nephew go and talk to the accused before he’s executed so that he will come across as more educated when he’s educated. Are we starting to see why I couldn’t read this during The Green Mile in my current emotional state? Which is sad because I’ve never seen that movie all the way through and I still haven’t watched it all the way through.

I hate the main character of Grant Wiggins. He’s pretentious. He’s one of those people that because they have an education after high school, they are God’s gift to the world. Some of the smartest people I know don’t have a college education. Wiggins hated going to see Jefferson because he felt superior to someone without an education. To Wiggins, if you weren’t educated, you were nothing. I hate that in person. He’s also called Professor and it bothers me. He’s a teacher, not a professor. They’re different things. And Wiggins doesn’t have the kind of education to be a professor. Wiggins is also seeing a married woman. Sure, the woman’s going to get a divorce but as the book says, a separation is not a divorce. I may be very conservative on this subject but don’t screw the girl you like if she’s still married. I feel like he changed minimally throughout the book. Yeah, he felt for people more but he was still kind of an ass, in my opinion. I did admire him getting in a fight because of Jefferson though. That was admirable.

During the trial, Jefferson’s state appointed attorney made Jefferson seem like less than human. The attorney went so far as to compare Jefferson to a pig. When Wiggins goes to Jefferson, Jefferson acts like a pig to make a point to Wiggins. And at the end, Jefferson tells someone to tell his godmother that he walked on his own two legs meaning that he didn’t go on all 4 like a pig. And they didn’t use pig in the book, they used the word hog. I know this is the 40s and things are totally different but it really bothers me that happens. Jefferson goes into a state of depression. I’m sure I would if I were wrongly accused and were going to be executed. I think that Jefferson was the one that stuck to his guns the most. He was stubborn about how he felt about being in jail. He kept his pride the whole time and he kept his pride the whole time.

A few other things. Then there’s the trio of religious leaders. The preacher, the aunt and the godmother. I see nothing wrong with trying to save someone before their death. But I don’t like how insistent they were. So that’s that. And I found it interesting that Wiggins called his aunt ‘Tante Lou’. I’m not sure why he would use the German word for Aunt. It just doesn’t seem to add up in my head. Like if it’s ever explained why he goes German for that, I missed it. He’s a black guy with, from what I know, no German blood in him or having German lessons.

Probably will not pick up this book again. It’s not that it was bad but it’s just one of those books that you just don’t pick up every day.

Personal update: Still dealing with a lot of stuff. Not fun stuff.

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Lewis’ A Grief Observed.

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I finished A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis. Yes, I’ve finished reading Persuasion and I still relate to the main character to a point and the review is coming probably within the next week or so but A Grief is one of those books I pick up randomly. You would think I would pick up a book that took less thinking. I didn’t. I’m not convinced that there are people that can read a non-fiction Lewis piece straight through and quickly. Even if you aren’t Christian. There’s too many thoughts. There’s 74 pages that aren’t in the forward by Madeleine L’Engle or blank in my copy of Grief and it took me like 3 weeks to finish it. It takes a lot out of you. Deep subject. A Grief centers around Lewis’ journal entries after his wife dies. He deals with his grief after losing his wife. I can’t really relate. I’ve lost people in my life but nothing like losing a spouse. Closest thing I’ve dealt with is the death of the only grandfather I ever knew at 18 and the great-uncle I was close to when I was 7. I can’t understand the magnitude of grief but I do somewhat understand the frustration and somewhat anger with God. I’ve had some anger since I’ve gotten back. Though some of my anger has been unjustified. I understand that but some of that anger is real to me. Sorry, that was a little tangent that didn’t need to happen but kind of want it to be thrown out there. For future reference.

I won’t even deal with all the thoughts in this book. The loss he goes through, the anger, the questioning. I don’t completely understand but I do respect it. I don’t think I’ll completely understand until I go through a loss that’s similar. And there’s a lot of ideas that I had going through this book that would make this the longest blog post ever. I read something in the last section that got me thinking. “Can a mortal ask questions which God finds unanswerable? Quite easily, I should think. All nonsense questions are unanswerable. How many hours are there in a mile? Is yellow square or round? Probably half the questions we ask- half our great theological and metaphysical problems-are like that.” (pages 81-82) Standing alone, without context, it’s a statement that deserves thought. I think that it’s an interesting thought if you’re going through grief or not. Does God think that we have nonsense questions on sense questions or is it one or the other? I think that God anticipates everything that we throw at Him. Does He shake his head at us? Probably. Does He wonder where we get our questions? I don’t think so. With my view of God, He knows us intimately. As someone I used to go to a Bible Study with said; God’s seen me naked, he knows everything good and bad about me. I think God has all our questions thought about and answered because He knows us individually and knows how we operate. And to me, I read the quote two ways: that quote is Lewis thinking that we have no idea that isn’t ridiculous and the other is that God predicts what the question is and isn’t to God’s intellect. I don’t think we’re at God’s thought level. He created man. How could there be an equal intellect level? But does God see us as completely ridiculous? That I’m not sure of.

I’m not surprised that Lewis wrote that quote though, especially after his wife died. Lewis wasn’t always Christian. He used to be very Atheistic. So when something tragic, I think it was easier for him to go to the thoughts of anger towards God and against God. For me it makes sense that a person who spent a large part of their life denying the existence of something being, will go back to the ideas of doubt. I may be wrong about that. I know that even though I doubt the plan at times I’m still leaning towards God than not. But maybe others aren’t like that. Lewis kept his faith after his wife died. He processed and more importantly, he mourned. No ‘just mourning’ about it. The word just belittles a situation. Speaking from personal experience there.

I do question why this book in particular was published. To me, this book is a book that’s deeply personal to the writer. Going through my journal entries from the past year, (and this book is comprised of journal entries) I would never want them published. There’s too much frustration, anger and pain to publish. Why would you publish something that was even more emotional than what I went through? Unless you were completely over your pain, (and death is a wound that is deep) publishing your journal entries from that time could possibly open up those wounds. But on the other hand, if Lewis himself decided to give this to his publisher, his thought process might have been to help those in similar situations. To help people get through their grief or for those who have gone through grief to have something to relate to. And it’s very possible that he, himself, gave this to his publishers. This book was published originally in 1961 and Lewis died in 1963. And I don’t know how his health was the last few years of his life.

I don’t know if this is my favorite Lewis book. But then it’s a subject that I’m not used to having in my life. It’s not something easily relatable in my life, something that I can look back on and say, ‘I’ve had that feeling’. But it’s a book that I can always go back to in the future when I go through that kind of grief and I’m okay with reading it.

I’m Anne. (Nope.)

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So I couldn’t sleep last night (it’s been an issue lately) and since I’m in the middle of a book, I looked for a book to review on my shelves. Couldn’t find one I wanted to do. Looked at my nook, figured out that I have a crap load of Jessica Sorenson. I did, a while ago, talk about Callie and Kayden. Which I still love. Since I last blogged, there’s one more Callie and Kayden books, 3 books of Violet and Luke and one of Seth and Grayson. I’ve read all of them and I think I wore myself out on them. True life story. But I do have a large section of her on my Nook. Which I haven’t been using as much since I’ve gotten back from Hungary. I’ve been really into physical books. I think it’s because I didn’t have many physical books when I was in Hungary. I missed them so I’ve been having a hard time controlling myself not to buy every book in sight. I also went downstairs of my parents’ house today looking at my books from my childhood. Why was I so obsessed with The Babysitter’s Club and the Sweet Valley Twins. I know a lot of those were hand me downs from my sister but I got a decent amount myself too. I feel like those series have gone out of fashion because kids want something a little more hardcore. And it’s a shame. They’re good for girls. Not always great for boys but still. Nothing seems reviewable at this time. I fell like I’d have to reread things to adequately review them.

I’ve started reading Persuasion by Jane Austen. It’s my first time reading it, though it seems like most of my Goodreads friends have. (just like Gatsby) It’s not a book that if you read an Austen in a Brit Lit class in college, (with an exception of like a specialty class) you won’t be reading it because let’s face it, Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility win out. I had to read P and P in a weekend while working in a tourist town over Labor Day weekend. Not fun. All I wanted to do was go out to the bar and hangout with people because everyone hung at the bar and it was going to be the last time I saw them in almost a year. Not because I’m a big drinker. Because I’m not. I’ll drink a normal amount, actually no. If I’m out, it’s like 2, 3 max drinks and I’m like I’m an adult and responsible for these people. Anyway.  I’m only a few chapters into Persuasion. The reason that I’m not farther into it is because of work. Work sucks time away from reading and then I’m mentally and physically exhausted after work and I’m preoccupied before work so the only days I read anymore is days off. And I don’t always get far. I really need a new job, other than being a CNA, because this job takes a lot out of you physically and emotionally. But this book is about a woman named Anne who’s 27…like me! She’s engaged at 19 and then is broken up and sees the man again at 27. This isn’t a review of the book because I’m not all the way through it. But there’s a line near of the beginning of the book that stood out to me. It’s on page 5 of my edition.

“but Anne, with an elegance of mind and sweetness of character, which must have placed her high with any people of real understanding, was nobody with either father or sister: her word had no weight; her convenience was always to give way;-she was only Anne.”

I feel like I relate. I am only Megan. I have a lot of times where I feel like my word has no weight. I feel ignored. I feel like I don’t fit in anywhere. I’m pretty much feeling like an Anne. But I don’t think that I match up with elegance of mind and not always with sweetness of character. I’m just not there. I know I’ve said that I’m more of a Bronte fan but I feel like this book is going to be relatable with me. I think that I’m going to enjoy watching her progression in this book. Because it’s Austen, there will be progression. It’s bound to happen. Austen does that. It’s who she is. There will be a post, I’m sure, about the book. I’m sure I’ll have an opinion. You just have to wait. Austen takes brain power for me right now. It’s not like when I was in college and can read P and P after the bar at 11 at night and have to work in the morning. I actually have to commit the brain power.

Side note. Hard week for me. The school I taught at started school this week and I want to be with my kids. Also, a lot of the people I know are posting about the immigration stuff going on in Hungary and I want to be there and doing something. I’m seeing posts on Facebook from ex-pats and Hungarians that are pretty much breaking my heart that I’m not there. I’m also angry I’m not there with people I love and a country that was home for 10 months. So it’s a week I’m homesick for Hungary. It’s what happens when you leave your heart somewhere.

The Great (?) Gatsby.

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So I finished The Great Gatsby. Can we all agree to be upset with Tom and Daisy?

The first thing I wondered with Daisy is how would modern feminists view her? I mean, I don’t consider myself a feminist. I do, however, have feminist tendencies. I’m used to men, my brother and father ruined me to this, opening my door to a building and fixing the major things. But I can drive myself and sit down myself, check my oil, etc. So I googled it. That’s what my generation does right? I found this website that defends Daisy. It argues that Daisy is trapped and scared. She is young. The affair she has with Gatsby was the only thing she does by choice. She has no other opportunity to make more choices. This site talks about the movie and it isn’t all that feminist but I found it interesting. I know that this is a character that was a typical type of person during the time period but Daisy tended to annoy me. I tended to keep askng myself why she didn’t leave Tom or confront him about his affair. But time period. Women were finding their identity and rebelling during this time period but not women like Daisy. She is still a Southern female. I hesitate to call her a woman because se was so young when she married, her chance to ease into adulthood was take away. I do like that in the beginning, Daisy and Jordan were compared to balloons. Not, particularly Jordan, but Daisy. She seems flighty enough to be a balloon.

I did like Jordan. I wanted her and the narrator to be together forever. Obviously that couldn’t happen. That would be too amazing. And I liked that Jordan had a typically male name and that she was a professional athlete. It was lovely. I totally appreciated her character and think that the book needed her. To me it felt better that there was a more stable woman in the book.

Tom, from the get go, is a guy you know is a bully. They describe him and I wrote ‘should have a moustache with that stance’ and the ‘description sets him to be a villain immediately’, which is something you need to do when you have a short book. I didn’t like him almost immediately. I do have written that it would be interesting to listen to Tom and modern politicians about foreign superpowers. I hate that Tom sent the husband over to Gatsby when it was his wife at fault. I understand why though. It was to get rid of his wife’s lover. Which is so hypocritical and ironic. He had a lover that was killed and the lover’s husband went to kill the lover. I did wonder at one point I did write down how I wondered why no one told Daisy and why she was clueless. I mean Nick met the woman and never told Daisy. (he was protecting her) This frustrated me because no one told her. But this was also the Twenties. You wouldn’t be able to freely talk about affairs. Tom is also abusive. I do not have time for that. No one should have time for that.

Both Tom and Daisy were described as careless people. And it’s really true. That’s what happens when you don’t care about people that aren’t yourself. Both of them are kind of narcissistic.

Gatsby wasn’t bad. He was just obsessively in love with the wrong woman. He makes Daisy more of an angel than she deserves. He does have an aloofness. I also feel like it’s interesting that people assume he’s killed a man. Gatsby does use ‘old man’ like it’s going out of style. It probably out of style because of him. I also like that his past was used to explain the present. It made for a good love triangle when he hates Tom. But everyone should hate Tom. I felt bad for him through most of the book. Especially when he died. Pretty much no one wanted to go to his funeral. So is Gatsby really great? I think that Nick thinks he is. And that might be the opinion that counts. It’s the narrator’s p.o.v. that counts. It would be interesting to see the same story from a different character.

Now we got the characters out of the way, let’s talk about the American Dream. this book is about the American Dream because who in this book doesn’t want to succeed. I feel like this was a big deal in the 20’s and prior. I mean after you had the Great Depression. I think it came back after though. Everyone wants to make their own fortune. My kids in Hungary wanted that. They feel like they don’t have a future in Hungary. So they want to go anywhere where they do have a future. A lot of them want to go to America and there is a decent amount of illegal Hungarians in the States but you didn’t hear that from me. They just want better. So the American Dream isn’t necessarily just American. The need to better yourself and to have opportunities are things everyone wants.

I think that this is a book about relationships. Obviously. Live triangle, friendship, loyalties. How do you stand up for yourself and how do you right wrongs. It’s big issues.  I don’t think that relationships are the first thing that I thought about. But they were there. I was just frustrated on what was going on. They’re all stupid. Mainly just Tom and Daisy. But everyone has their dumb moments in this book. After sitting and thinking on this book for a few days, I have time to think about these relationships. I don’t want to be a Daisy. I want some sense when it comes to relationship.

Overall, I did like this book. It’s a good book to get a taste of a culture and an era. Because there is a lot to learn about both. I obviously could go on for a long time about issues addressed in this book. But I won’t. There’s actually a lot that I skipped in this review to keep it at a decent length. Since I’ve finished Gatsby, I’ve read Paper Towns by John Green and right now I’m reading Full of Grace by Dorthea Benton Frank. I may or may not do reviews on them. If there’s any questions about this review, please ask. Or if there’s any recommendations, please give them. I’m not guaranteeing that I’ll take them, but I’ll consider them.

Great and American and Novel. All together.

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I just recently finished reading James Rollins’ book The Blood Gospel. I love James Rollins. My problem with James Rollins is that I read one book and I crave more James Rollins. That’s how I love him. I can’t get enough of him. But I’m out of him right now. And since I’m avoiding work and I’m not near a really good library…not going to happen for a while. Ugh, there’s a void in my life now. (Yes, I’m being dramatic.) Yes, there are religious things in this book but if you read it, which I recommend everyone does because it’s James freaking Rollins, take some of the religious things with a grain of salt. But it didn’t disappoint. I want to read the rest in the series. I know I read over 600 closer to 700 pages of this series with just this one book but I want more.

Right now, I am about to start reading The Great Gatsby. It’s my first Fitzgerald. I know it might be a little bit generic for my first Fitzgerald. I probably should be reading The Beautiful and the Damned, which I have on my Nook but haven’t gotten to. (And FYI I’d rather have a real copy of it. Anyone wanting to donate any books. I’m down.) And people have told me to start with The Beautiful and the Damned. I’m just being a rebel. Historically, I have had people upset with me because I haven’t read Fitzgerald. Not in high school lit or college lit classes. No Fitzgerald. Yay North Dakota education system. So because I am fascinated by authors and where books came from and why, I did my research.

Things that I did know: he was in deep love with his wife. (The Great Gatsby is dedicated ‘Once Again To Zelda’. I mean this was his third novel.) From what my friends have said, I want to be Zelda Fitzgerald. Like he was romantic and she has books where she’s the basis of a character. I want to positively immortalized in a book. He did something to do with the first world war.

Things that I found out with reading: He was born in Minnesota, though did not stay there. I like Mid-western authors. Leif Enger being one of them. If you haven’t read him, try him. Not everyone’s cup of tea but interesting. He was seen as handsome, thought definitely not my type. He went to Princeton. Fitzgerald was commissioned a second lieutenant in the infantry and assigned to Camp Sheridan outside of Montgomery, Alabama. It was there that he met and fell in love with a beautiful 18-year-old girl named Zelda Sayre, the daughter of an Alabama Supreme Court judge. The war ended before Fitzgerald was deployed. The Beautiful and the Damned was his second novel, I thought it was his first but lie.

After Gatsby, Fitzgerald became more of an alcoholic and his wife Zelda had some issues with mental breakdowns. And she was admitted to a mental health clinic in Switzerland for a while. Fitzgerald died at the age of 44, believing he was a failure. On a personal level, get that. There’s a lot more of Fitzgerald. Click to find out more and to find where I got a lot of my information.

I went on GoodReads today to mark that I was reading Gatsby. I scrolled down to see who’s read it and what they thought of it. I’m a failure. Most everyone I know has read this. There are 24 reviews. Out of 60 people I’m friends with on GoodReads, maybe not so bad but still. I’m kind of a failure. With a degree in English Lit, I should have read this book before. Or at least Fitzgerald. They’re mostly good reviews and there are some of my friends that have marked it to read so I’m not completely alone. And I do think I have to put in a disclaimer that I have seen the DiCaprio version of the book. (DAMN DiCaprio hasn’t gotten the recognition anywhere. My kids in Hungary even know it. When I asked what you associate with the Emmys they say, “Not Leonardo DiCaprio”.) So it’s not like I don’t know the general story. (And if we’re using movies as the pure basis for judgment of the novel version, we’re in trouble.) I was going to start reading this last night but I was really tired after running after my brother’s kids for a while. (“It’s not kicking, it’s hitting with feet.” Where do they come up with that?) So I got like a page in and was like, yeah…no. I’m sleeping. From what I can see, Fitzgerald isn’t mindless. I have to put more thought into it than a modern novel. It was also written in another era so I can’t go into it thinking that the vernacular is going to be natural to me. I could, and have, go off about vernacular and how language has seem to go down hill in recent times but I won’t now. It’s refreshing though to read a book where it makes me concentrate, which Gatsby will do. This isn’t a long book. My copy, published by Scribner Paperback Fiction and was bought for $3.80 at a used book store last year, has 222 pages starts on page 5 and ends on page 189. So that’s 184 pages of story.

There is a great emphasis in this book about the American Dream. Which, for me, is different for me now after being overseas for a year. But I’ll talk about that in the review.

After reading a few reviews on GoodReads, which we all know is the literary Bible, (sarcasm. I point that out because not many people get my sarcasm.) people say that this is the best American novel ever. I’m skeptical. Anyone that says that anything is the best ever, I’m not sure I believe it. But at the same time, my expectations are high. Expectations are high because the people that have told me good things about Fitzgerald are people I respect deeply. If this book disappoints, it’s going to be an epic disappointal. And people will hear about it. This isn’t a long book so the review shouldn’t be to far away.

Reconstructing Amelia.

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The last post was obviously emotion based. I’m not going to apologize for it. I know some of you are confused by that like why would I apologize. I’ve had several people say things to me that insinuates that I’m being dramatic. I am being dramatic but I’ve watered down what’s going in me quite a bit. And some of the dramatics need to happen. Not all of it, but some of it. So no apologies. I’m sure I’ll rant and rave about something that dramatically again. But I will try to water those down with posts that are not dramatic. So today, we’re going old school post. Book Review. It won’t be a long one but it’s a review.

Reconstructing Amelia is by Kimberly McCreight. Now, I’m moving to our other farm and my copy is over there so if I mess something up, it’s because of that. It’s about a (lawyer) woman who’s teenage daughter, who’s painted as perfect at the beginning, seems to have committed suicide because she got caught cheating. The book goes between the mother dealing with Amelia’s death and Amelia the months prior to dying. Then there’s blog posts and Facebook posts. All of it’s tied together. One thing that I noticed about half way through reading is that it’s compared to Gone Girl. I should have noticed that before because it’s on the front cover and the back cover and it’s notable. I didn’t notice it because I was more interested in what the book was about. At first, the comparison kind of bothered me. Any comparison between kind of bothers me. A book shouldn’t be compared to another book. I’ve done it before but when it gets to a level of ridiculousness, it bothers me. And this is on both covers. Think the publishers want to sell their book by jumping on the success of another book? But I kept reading. I see the comparison. There’s a lot of stuff that comes out throughout the book. Amelia’s involvement with a secret club, things she did with and for the club, Ben’s identity, Amelia’s father, what happened on the roof when Amelia jumped, Amelia’s relationship. There’s lots twists and turns like Gone Girl. But it’s different. It’s watered down.

I generally liked it. I’m not always a fan of the flip flopped views, it’s hit or miss, but I like this for the most part. It was almost, ALMOST, cinematic. But it was why it had a flip flop view system. I think that the author wanted to move things along and keep the intrigue going and it was done relatively well. Could it have been done better? Probably. But done pretty well.

In this book, there’s a lot about high school culture. Mean kids/girls, social media, school activities, pier pressure. I wondered how I would have reacted in that situation at 15. (which is how old Amelia was) First of all, I don’t think I would have done some of the things Amelia did for this secret club. I was a little bit of a loner thought and no one really cared. And I went to a very small school so if there were a secret club, everyone would know about it (which they did in the book) and everyone would know about the things you had to do to get in. I think, that part, I would have laughed at the club and wouldn’t have done it. Amelia did it because, I think, she wanted to be accepted by some of the club members and if you read the book you know which member I’m talking about. I would have had a hard time with the mean girls though. I never felt bullied in high school and I was always somewhat accepted but I was also involved in enough, not much but enough, and I was also a little protected by my class. So I never had to deal with bullies like this. So I was lucky. Not everyone is that lucky.

I like the emotion in this book and thought all emotions were appropriate. There’s a lot of emotion that the book has to deal with because of the subject matter. But it was good. Do I recommend it. Yes.

I’m not Hungarian.

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One thing before I get into what I really want to talk about. Putin is in Budapest. I don’t agree with either Putin or Orban (Prime Minister of Hungary). Side note: Sometimes a student will say Orban and for a second I hear Urban. Anyway. I was just telling some of my seniors on Friday that you will never fully agree with your government. One of the girls went “oh” like it was a revolutionary comment. And coming from a post-communist country, maybe it is.

So back to the real topic. I’m not Hungarian. Far from it. I don’t look or act the part. Here’s some things that Hungarians want me to sympathize with them or act accordingly to and I don’t. I just don’t get it. I’m not Hungarian.

1. ‘It’s so cold today.’ It’s 37 degrees out. Know what it is back home? -6, before windshield. You don’t know cold. There’s been 2 decent snowfalls since I got here and neither of them stuck.

2. ‘You have a cold, or the sniffles. Why aren’t you home in bed or at the doctor?’ Hungarians stay home for the sniffles so they don’t get more sick. If they develop a cough that lasts more than a day, it’s the doctor. I have had a cold this week and I mentioned I was tired because of being sick today in my office. My colleague started telling me that I should be in bed or go to the doctor. I got sick of it and I looked at her and said kind of loudly, “I’m not Hungarian” “And Americans don’t get sick?” “NO but we don’t stay home for just a cold or the sniffles.” Then she proceeded to tell me that Hungarians don’t do work just at work and that it would take me longer to get well and that there are different viruses in Europe like they have different viruses in Africa and that I could have the flu. Right. Because at almost 27, I have no idea what having the flu feels like and have no idea how my body reacts when I’m sick with a stuffed nose a cough. You’re right. I’m just the young kid that doesn’t know anything.

3. ‘Hey do you want raw bacon?’ yeah. Gonna pass on that. I have a weird thing about bacon being cooked. And I won’t buy beef here. I rarely buy it in the states because my family has beef and I can get it from home. But beef at the store, or even a butcher sometimes, always creeps me out. I don’t know where it’s from or what it’s been fed or who butchered it. I’ll get stuff from mom and dad as long as I can. That way I know where it’s coming from. Call me crazy. Just how I am.

4. I’m typically not as negative as a Hungarian. I do have my negative moments but nothing compared to a Hungarian.

Now don’t take these things and think that I hate Hungary. I love Hungary. It has wiggled into my heart, grabbed hold and is never letting go. I’m okay with that. I just had some of those moments today where I wanted to shake a Hungarian and tell them they have no idea and they’re being dramatic. I’m at the moment where I have cultural frustrations…can you tell?